November 7, 2014

The Eternal Season - 11/7/14 - Sedge'e 2014 Hawkeye Football Game Notes - Week 11: Iowa @ Minnesota

Sedge's Hawkeye Football Game Notes - 2014 Edition
Iowa’s Record: 6-2, 3-1 Big Ten, 2-0 B1G West 
Iowa’s Rankings:
USA Today: 12 votes
College Football Playoff:

August 30th v. Northern Iowa, WIN 31-23
September 6th v. Ball State, WIN 17-13
September 13th v. Iowa State, Loss 20-17
September 20th @ Pittsburg, WIN 24-20
September 27th @ •Purdue, WIN 24-10
October 11th v. Indiana, WIN 45-29
October 18th @ Maryland, Loss 38-31
November 1st v. •Northwestern, WIN 48-7
November 8th, @ •Minnesota, 12:00 pm, ESPN2
November 15th @ •Illinois, TBD
November 22nd v. •Wisconsin, TBD
November 28th v. •Nebraska (Black Friday), TBD

•Big Ten West Division Game

*Times Eastern

Scouting next opponent:
Illinois is on a bye, Badgers @ Boilermakers, 12:00 pm, ESPNU
November 8th, 2014.  Iowa v Minnesota Golden Rodents, 6-2, 3-1 Big Ten, 2-1 B1G West
Previous Meetings: 107, Rodents lead 61-44-2
Last Meeting: 2013, Hawkeyes 23, Rodents 7

Current Line: Iowa -2

Turnover Margin: +2,  B1G #5, FBS #44

Current Week 2 Deep:

Hawkeye Stat Pack - 2014
Total   400.5  Pass  244 9 Rush 155.6  Scoring 29.6
B1G    #6             #5               #8                    #6
FBS    #67           #56             #70                  #63
Total   322.8  Pass  185.4  Rush 137.4    Scoring 20.0
B1G    #6              #4                  #7                   #5
FBS    #18            #16                #38                #18 
Big Ten West Standings:
Nebraska         8-1, 4-1 B1G, 3-0 B1G West
Iowa                6-2, 3-1 B1G, 2-0 B1G West
Minnesota       6-2, 3-1 B1G, 2-1 B1G West
Wisconsin       6-2, 3-1 B1G, 1-1 B1G West
Northwestern 3-5, 2-3 B1G, 1-3 B1G West
Illinois         4-5, 1-4 B1G, 1-3 B1G West
Purdue         3-6, 1-4 B1G, 1-3 B1G West

Week 10 Recap: Mildcats

It was a cool crisp day in Iowa City, but the sun was shining, and it was perfect for a Big Ten November game.  

We do never hear who wins the toss, but it’s little matter, the Mildcats are kicking off to Iowa.  The kick lands right at the goal line, and right inside the near sideline, Parker reaches up, drops the ball, but then picks it up on one hop and starts forward.  At the 10, he cuts the ball across the numbers, and he keeps going that way, he is in the clear as he crosses the 20, the 30, he is now outside the far numbers as he crosses the 40, the 50, and he is finally forced out at about the Cat 46!  But as he falls out of bounds, the kicker shoves him in the back, and Parker slams into a helmet case on the Mildcat sideline, flags fly, that is a late hit out of bounds.  15 yard penalty, an Iowa 1st down at the Cat 31!

We would not see Parker the rest of the day.  No word on his health yet going forward. (Late word he is good to go Saturday).

Iowa starts in the solo tailback, single wideout on each side look.  Jake snaps it, quickly fires it far side, the wideout screen, caught, Smith, he kind of stumbles as he starts forward, but he gets 5 yards before he is pushed out, 2nd and 5.

Iowa to the same formation, Jake snaps it, turns, hands it to Mark, he starts off tackle right, gets to the line and he’s in the clear!  At the yellow line he cuts the ball out toward the near side numbers, then plows straight ahead, sticks out him arm to get KMM out of his way, and gets it down to the Mildcat 8, 18 yards, and it’s 1st and goal Hawkeyes!

Hawks now to the I formation.  It goes to Mark and he starts straight ahead, but he bumps into his fullback, and that allows the Cats to drop him for no gain.  2nd and goal from the 8.

Once again to the I, Mark gets the ball, starts left, gets to the line and charges up field, and the Cats don’t even touch him as he strides into the end zone, TOUCHDOWN IOWA!  And it’s 7-0 Hawks, after  4 plays, and 1:45 off the clock.  

One of the Cat defensive lineman is hurt on the play, and he needs help getting off the field, hopping on one foot.  Koehn drills the extra point through, and Iowa fans break out the fight song.

Koehn’s kickoff actually lands at the 15, so the Cat return man must run up to catch it, he kind of bobbles the ball but he holds on, and gets it out to the 26.  1st down Mildcats.

The Cats start with a handoff to Jackson, and he gets 15 yards going to the far sideline, it seems the Hawks have about 3 shots at him, but they can't get him until he is out to the 41.

From the gun. Siemian drops back and is looking down the middle, but LTP shoves the lineman 
back into the QB and drops him to the ground, an 8 yard sack!  2nd and 18!

Now the Cats try rolling the QB a bit to the near side, but his pass is tipped by Ott, and nearly picked off.  3rd and 18.

Iowa stands everyone up in the raider package, and Ott actually hits the QB as he gets the ball away. and it falls harmlessly to the turf.  4th and 18, and on comes the Cat punt team.

The punt lands at the 22, where McCarron makes the catch, but the first man by knocks the ball out of his hands, but McCarron alertly snags it, but loses 8 yards on the return as a result.  Iowa 1st down, ball at the 15, clock at 12:07 of the 1st.

On the punt, one of the Iowa players actually seems to overrun the play and is actually behind the punter as the kick gets away.  

Iowa starts with a false start (Walsh), and now it’s 1st and 15 from the 10.

Iowa now to the I formation, with two wideouts on the low side.  Jake snaps, fakes the handoff to Mark, stands and looks near side, then fires it deep across the hash, caught, Smith, and he gets out to the 33, 23 yards, and an Iowa 1st down! 

We see a scrum breaking out between Penn State and Maryland, and then the Terps refuse to shake the Lions hands as the captains line up at midfield.  

Back to the game, Mark is deep, and a solo wideout on the high side.

Jake snaps it, turns, hands it to Mark, he takes two steps, then stops and flips the ball back to Jake -the flea-flicker - the flip is a bit off but Jake snags it, looks, and then fires it deep down the near hashmark, as the camera pans we see the receiver is wide open, but the pass is a bit short so he must hold up, but he makes the catch (Vandeberg), and gets tackled at the Mildcat 25, 46 yards, 1st down Iowa!!!

Iowa now to the power I, Mark gets it and tries the right side, gets about 4, 2nd and 6 from the 21.

The same formation, Jake snaps it, turns to hand it to Mark, but the ball falls to the ground, and Jake has to fall on it at the 30.  3rd and 15.

Iowa now has Jake in the gun, Bullock to his right, the triangle wideouts to the far side, a solo guy on the near.  Jake snaps the ball, drops back, and then floats it down the far sideline, he has Hillyer open, but it’s just a bit too long, no good, 4th and 15.

Jake departs, the Iowa kicking team takes the field, and it’s a 48 yard kick.

Koehn gets the kick up, its starts on a line with the near upright, but then hooks inside them, nearly center cut, and it’s 10-0 Hawks at the 9:43 mark of the 1st.

Koehn’s kickoff then lands at the 4, and the Mildcat brings it out to the 23.

The Cats read/option to Jackson, the Hawks hit him at the line, but he dives forward to get about 4 yards.  2nd and 6.

Now the Cats try a sweep to the far side, and Davis has none of it, drilling the wideout for a 6 yard loss!  3rd and 12!

Davis departs as the Hawks go to the dime, the QB must be hearing the footsteps, because his pass to the near side falls well short of his receiver, so the Mildcat punt team takes the field again.

Once again, the Hawks come very close to the punter, but the kick gets away, and McCarron makes the catch in heavy traffic and gets drilled, so he actually loses 2 on his return.  Iowa ball, at our 40, clock at 8:19 of the 1st.  

No timeout this time, as the Hawks take the field, they are in the I formation, with a wideout on each side.  Jake changes things up at the line - the ball goes to Mark, he tries the far side, but gets hit and only gets 1.  2nd and 9.

Mark gets the ball again, this time straight ahead, and this time, 4 yards, 3rd and 4 from the Iowa 46.

Jake to the gun, Damon to his left, and twin wideouts on each side of the field.  KMM goes into motion toward the near side, but the whistles blow and a flag flies, that’s a false start on the Hawks, now 3rd and 9.

Jake still has 4 wideouts in the formation, he snaps the ball, drops back, then fires it deep down the near hash, it’s into heavy traffic but it’s caught, KMM, and he gets it down to the MIldcat 16, 1st down Iowa after a 43 yard gain!!!

Iowa now to the I formation, Jake snaps the ball, turns, hands it to Damon, he starts straight ahead but only gets 2, 2nd and 8 from the 14.

Iowa again to the I, with Mark at tailback.  It goes to Mark, he starts straight ahead, gets hit at the line, but bounces off it, he cuts inside another defender at the yellow line, then plows straight ahead and through an arm tackle as he falls into the end zone, TOUCHDOWN IOWA!!!  14 more yards for Mark, and it’s now 17-0 Iowa at the 5:28 mark of the 1st quarter!!!

Koehn’s kickoff lands at the 4, where the Mildcat short hops it, and then he brings it out to the 29.  1st down Mildcats.  

The Cats start in the gun, but flags fly, that’s a false start on Northwestern, 1st and 15 from the 24.

Now Jackson gets the ball, he tries the middle and gets only 1.  2nd and 14.

Now the Cats run the screen to the near side, it’s caught, and he gets about 3 before the Hawks wrap him up, 3rd and 11.

The Cats have 5 wideouts in the game, but they probably wished that they had a few more blockers, as Siemian drops back, the pocked quickly collapses, and LTP drills him again for a 11 yard sack!!!  4th and 22!!!

The Cats are in punt formation, snapping the ball from the 17 yard line, the center of the 3 back blockers steps forward to signal something, then the ball is snapped, the kick is away - no, it’s BLOCKED, and it’s lying on the ground at the 1, and it’s picked up and carried into the end zone, TOUCHDOWN IOWA!!!  It’s Ben Niemann, #44, a true freshman from just across the Illinois border, and it’s 24-0 Iowa at the 3:39 mark of the 1st quarter!!!

The Cats would go 3 and out one more time, and Iowa had the ball back at their 28 after the (successful) punt.  

But the Hawks would go 3 and out, and I guess the Iowa punt team fell asleep, as the ball gets away from Kidd, who picks it up and tries to run to the far side, but the Cats catch him and drop him at the Iowa 18.  

The 1st quarter would end with the Cats at the Iowa 5, and two plays into the 2nd, they would score, and the Hawkeyes had a 24-7 lead.

But after the Cats scored, Iowa went on a 12 play, 75 yard drive, the final 31 yards coming on a 3rd and 7, when Jake drops the ball perfectly into Smith as he crosses the goal line, and that makes the game 31-7 at the 8:11 mark of the second.

The teams would trade possessions, but then at the 2:02 mark, the Cats tried to get their 2 minute offense going, and on 3rd down, they complete the pass, but Lowdermilk flies in and drills the receiver, who loses the ball, and Mabin falls on it!  Iowa ball at the Mildcat with 1:41 left in the half!!!

It takes just 3 plays, but the first one was from someone who we had not seen before.  

It was the redshirt freshman, Arkum Wadley, who on his first Iowa carry, took the ball around the near end for 23 yards, and Iowa has a 1st and 10 from the Mildcat 11.

It took just two more snaps, Mark got the ball both times, 4 yards, and then 7 yards, and the score was Iowa 38, Northwestern 7.

The 3rd quarter would see no scoring, as Iowa stuffed the Mildcats from a 4th and goal from the Iowa 1 midway through the quarter, actually tipping the 4th down pass that was targeted for an open receiver.  

The 4th would feature another Koehn field goal, this one from just 24 yards, and that made it 41-7, and then Sunshine came in, and he executed a 17 play, 81 yard drive, that culminated in a 5 yard touchdown run for Wadley, and that made the final Iowa 48, Northwestern 7.

Just like your scribe remembered it, from back in the Hayden days, during the Iowa 21 game winning streak against Northwestern, from 1974 to 1994.  

A game that really only featured 3 mistakes by Iowa, the fumble by Jake that he recovered, the botched punt, and Wadley did lose a fumble in the 3rd quarter, that was the possession that had the Mildcats drive die at the 1 yard line.

Otherwise, near perfection from Iowa in all phases of the game.

Yes, the bye week clearly worked for the defense, who only allowed the Mildcats 180 net yards - 105 on the ground, just 75 in the air.  This with a 5th year senior quarterback.

LTP would end up with 3 sacks on the day, giving him now 11 on the season, and he is a major threat over the final 4 games.  

Mark would end up with 94 yards on his 20 carries, with the 3 rushing tds, he now has 29 touchdowns at Iowa, just 4 short of the Iowa record.  With 4 games to go.

But it was Wadley who finally broke the 100 yard barrier, which had gone on 10 games, with his 15  carries for 106 yards - 7.1 per touch.  

With Daniels out and Canzeri still banged up, Arkum may make a very nice combo package with Mark over these last 4 games.  The combined effort gained 221 on the day - and maybe, just maybe, the beast that should be the Iowa rushing attack has awakened - just in time for our November run.

Jake, 12 of 19 for 239, that’s 12.6 yards per completion - if you were playing the ‘drink every time Jake dumps it off game’ you didn’t even get through one beer.  That is what the Iowa running game can do - enable the play action, and deep shots down the field.  

C.J was 5 of 6 for just 23 yards, but he also ran the ball 23 yards on just 3 carries, so that is an element of his play that will keep defensive coordinators guessing.

And the best part of this woodshed beating was this - it made the Golden Rodents begin to lose sleep.  

We are coming.  And we are bring the pain north.  Come back home, Floyd.

Week 11 Preview: Golden Rodents

So the Rodents are also 6-2, and 3-1 in the conference, but they have already dropped one game in the division, and it was a bad loss.  Let’s take a look at how they have gotten to this point.

The Rodents opened hosting Eastern Illinois, and they jumped out to a 35-0 lead midway through the 4th quarter, but then they gave up 20 points in the last 7 minutes to make the final 42-20.  EIU is an FCS team.

In week 2, Middle Tennessee came north, and this time the Rodents had a 28-0 lead before finally winning 35-24.  Of note, in both of these games, the opposition scored a touchdown in the final minute.

But then the Rodents went on the road, to Texas, to face TCU.

This time, the Rodents fell behind 30-0 and ended up losing 30-7.  TCU stuffed the Rodent rushing attack for 99 net, and forced the Rodents into 5 turnovers.  TCU is now ranked 7th in the country, with a big showdown with #9 Kansas State this Saturday.

After the loss, the Rodents returned to the Twin Cities to host San Jose State, and here the Rodents forced 5 turnovers to win a sloppy game (not helped by a one hour thunderstorm delay) 24-7.

The Rodents then opened the Big Ten with a visit to the Big House, to face the reeling Wolverines. It was a 10-7 game at half, but then the Rodents scored 17 in the 3rd to zip for Michigan, and the guests cruised to a  30-14 win.  Michigan only had 171 yards of total offense and was -2 in turnovers in the loss.

Of course, that made Michigan 2-3 on the year, which was the first time in the 135 year history of Michigan football that the team had 3 losses before September ended.  Too bad we miss them this year.

As mentioned in last week’s notes, the Rodents then had a nip and tuck battle with Northwestern, and the 100 yard kickoff return in the middle of the 4th was the difference, Rodents beat the Mildcats 24-17.

Of note, the Mildcats had 100 yards more total offense than the Rodents in this one.

The Boilermakers then came to TCF Bank stadium, and this was a very up and down game.  

The 1st quarter ended at 14-14.  The Rodents jumped ahead 20-14 (they missed the PAT) early in the 2nd, but then Purdue scored 3 times to lead at halftime 31-20.

The 3rd would end with Purdue still leading 38-36, but the Rodents would be the only team to score in the 4th, with a 52 yard field goal no less, and that gave them the 39-38 win.  The Rodents were now 3-0 in the Big Ten and feeling good about themselves.  

Of note, the Rodent defense gave up 298 rushing yards to Purdue.  Purdue had 84 against the Iowa defense.

The Rodents then visited the hapless Illini, and Illinois would jump out to a 14-0 lead.  But the Rodents came back to lead it 24-21 at the end of the 3rd.

But they could not hold the lead.

With 6:33 left, the Rodents had the ball deep in their end of the field, and the Illini defense stripped the ball from star tailback’s Cobb’s hands, and they picked up the pigskin and ran it in for a touchdown, and that was the final, Illini 28, Rodents 24.

That blew the Rodent’s chance to start 4-0 in the Big Ten for the first time since 1967.  Ouch.

Oh, and they finish with the Hawkeyes, Buckeyes, Huskers, and Badgers.  They could very well end up 3-5 in the conference.

The Rodent offense is lead by sophomore QB Leidner, #7.  To date he has completed 71 of 139 passes, for 1087 yards, with 6 touchdowns, but ominously, also 6 interceptions.  Those passing totals have the Rodents ranked #122 nationally - out of 125.

Leidner has also been sacked 12 times.  LTP - you’re up.

He can also run the ball, he has been as high as 84 yards against Purdue, on 13 carries, but in the Illinois loss he had a net of 3 yards on the ground.

He does have 6 rushing touchdowns, those usually of the very close in variety.  

Leidner did not play in the San Jose State game - where the back up QB completed just 1 of 7 passes, while running for 161 on 18 carries.  He has not played since.

But the star of the Rodent offense is the senior tailback Cobb, #27.

To date, 211 carries for 1132 yards, (5.4 average), with 7 rushing touchdowns.  He does have 10 catches on the year, but those are mainly the dump down variety.

Cobb has been as high as 220 - against Middle Tennessee.  The Mildcat defense kept him to 97, on 30 carries - that 3.2 average over 2 yards below his season standard.  Iowa rush defense - better.

And of course it was his fumble that let the 0-3 Illini take down the 3-0 Rodents.

Due mainly to Cobb, the Rodent rushing attack checks it at 216 per game, good for #32 overall.  

It will be clear, the plan of attack must be to limit Cobb to 50% or less of his average, and make the way below average passing game try (and fail) to make up for it.

You have to figure that the Iowa tailbacks have to be a bit sick of hearing about all these awesome running backs we have to face in the final month - with little to no mention of themselves.  After last week, it seems the Iowa offense may be ready to do something about it.

The Rodents give up about 145 per game on the ground, but of course Purdue doubled that, and you can maybe learn a little bit about common opponents.  If the Iowa O line is playing like they did a week ago, getting over 200 again should not be much of a stretch.  We may even have Canzeri back to feature the triple headed monster.

If the Hawks can keep ahead of the chains, as they say, the Rodents are 9th in the conference in 3rd down defense.  That should allow the Hawks to win the time of possession battle.

The Rodents allow about 208 through the air, but they have snagged 11 interceptions to date, so Jake/C.J. must be on target.  Of course, if Iowa can establish the running game, the Rodents will be susceptible to play action.  Deep down the field play action.

The Rodent defense is also ranked 12th in the B1G and 115th overall in red zone defense.  Which means Iowa must score touchdowns and attempt no more than two field goals.  Like for Mark to get ever closer to the Iowa touchdown record from close in.

The Rodents are above average in both kickoff and punt returns - Koehn needs to neutralize the kickoff returns with touchbacks, and the Iowa punters must pin the Rodent return men to the sideline.  The Rodents have blocked one punt, and they have had a punt blocked themselves.  Let’s see if the Hawks have found a new weapon off the edge when we are returning punts.  

Of course Parker is also above average in kickoff returns - one of these weeks, he is going to take one to the house.  This would be a good week to do it - crush their spirit early.

Another week, another game against a team coming off a bye week.  Didn’t work so well for the Mildcats.  Nor will it for the Rodents when we punch them in the mouth from the opening gun.

In the 30 years of the Metrodome, the Hawks were 16-14 in the Rodents home stadium.  A win Saturday will mean the Hawkeyes will be 2-2 in TCF Bank Stadium, aka Kinnick North, Outdoor.  Once we get to .500 in their building…

The Iowa rushing attack puts both Mark and Arkum over 100 this week, and that allows Iowa to attack downfield in the passing game.  Mark gets two more rushing tds to stand at 31 for his career, while the Iowa passing attack tops 300 with tds to Powell (50 yards or more), Smith, and Duzey.

The Hawks bring Floyd back to Iowa City, and the Rodents are left wondering if there are any wins left on their schedule.  

Hawkeyes 38, Rodents 17.

Go Home, Floyd.



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